Legal Guide
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Interviewing a potential attorney 

It's time to consult an attorney to get a broader legal view of your pending divorce.  But what should you know before you meet with your first attorney?

In order to prepare questions and topics of discussion when you interview an attorney you should know what to consider in order to select the most qualified attorney(s) to interview.

Know what you seek in an attorney

Typically, the attorney will advertise as a family law or divorce attorney, but some will be listed under general practice attorneys who do not limit their practice to any specific area of law, but often include family law in their areas of concentration. 

You should look for an attorney with the background, rate and "court side manner" that provides the best representation.   

Some excellent attorneys have strong personalities.  This may be good for negotiating or litigating, but you should still feel heard when discussing your concerns.  Do not meet with anyone who has a relationship or has already met with your spouse unless it is a mutual attorney.

He/she should have experience with the type of divorce you seek and similar cases like yours. 

Know the difference between a mental well-being counselor and a legal counselor 

Your goal is to dissolve your marriage with the least amount of time, problems and legal fees.  There is no way to sugar coat "divorce" which is usually intertwined with emotional drama and pain. 

Know that your attorney will be your attorney and not your therapist.  It's time to toughen up and speak law, or at least understand it so that you can get the best settlement possible.

What to ask your attorney in the first interview

Take notes while interviewing the attorney and before the close of the interview, go over important topics to clarify your understanding of what's been discussed.  There will be many aspects of your situation that we cannot fully anticipate, specific to your state and circumstances, but generally you will want to include the following in your interview(s) or initial consultation:

It's best to consider multiple attorney(s) and unless legally necessary, don't hire the day of the interview.  Review your notes and any information the attorney(s) provide that would help you in your hiring process.

Proceed to the next article in our Legal Guide, "Why you should like your attorney" to help you determine if the attorney(s) you met are a good fit to represent you in your divorce. 



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